"A dazzling display" at London Jazz Fest

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Sunday November 13, 2016

From The Guardian

London jazz festival review ‘” a dazzling display all across the musical spectrum
By: John Fordham

Two of jazz’s best virtuosi improvising at the speed of thought…

…Redman and Mehldau startled even their seasoned fans at the Barbican on Saturday night. After Mehldau’s catchily rocking Always August, and truculent tenor sax blurts and radiant falsetto sounds from Redman on his Mehlsancholy Mode, the saxophonist’s ingenuity on Sonny Rollins’ Sonnymoon for Two told the crowd they were witnessing a performance a cut above even this pair’s usual standards. And Mehldau confirmed it in an unaccompanied break in which his control of separate melody lines let loose on the fly never lost its careering momentum. Redman (who had tweeted the single word ‘dread’ as Trump won) wryly reflected on the mixture of guilt and relief they felt at taking refuge in music-making away from America, before the pair concocted streams of songlike lines, separately and together, on a bewitching visit to the ballad I Should Care; a gently introduced but increasingly frenetic burn through Mehldau’s The Distance; and a standing-ovation encore with Charlie Parker’s Ornithology. If it was a refuge in music, a lot of people in the hall sounded volubly grateful for it.

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